Wednesday, January 8, 2020

#IWSG : #Writing and The Ticking Time Clock

It's the first post of the year for the Insecure Writer's Support Group. Our #WritingCommunity consists of writers of every genre, and all levels of experience. Everyone is welcome. If you'd like to join, go HERE

Many thanks to our founder and host, Alex Cavanaugh, and our awesome co-hosts for this month: T. Powell Coltrin, Victoria Marie Lees, Stephen Tremp, Renee Scattergood, and J.H. Moncrieff!

If you can't think about what to write, here is this month's optional question:

What started you on your writing journey? Was it a particular book, movie, story, or series? Was it a teacher/coach/spouse/friend/parent? Did you just "know" suddenly you wanted to write?


Like most writers, my journey started with a love of reading. The discovery of the school library somewhere around third grade (late to be introduced to books, in my opinion) is when it all started for me. The whole class tromped down to the library together. This was around the time when writing book reports became part of the curriculum. Most kids grumbled about it, but I secretly loved it. 

It never occurred to me that I could be a writer until later in life. Education or book learning wasn't a high priority growing up. I knew that "IF" I graduated from high school, I was going to work. College didn't appear on my very short list of options.  

Long story short, I did go to college as an older adult (encouraged by my very supportive hubby) and earned a BA in English Literature. I got to read a lot! And write a lot!  I started questioning what I could do with my life. Up until this time, I worked and went to school and took care of my family. 

But what did I want? 

The answer was writing. Even so, it took me a long while to follow through--because life, and fear, and doubt.... 

And eventually...

There is a sell-by date on our lives that we don't tend to notice until middle age. The thought that time might run out before accomplishing something in life.

And so I decided to start writing. Better late than never. 

The ticking time clock spurred me on. 

What about you? 

Were you spurred on by a ticking clock? 

Or had you always known you wanted to be a writer? 

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

IWSG: Write. Travel. Garden. Repeat.

It's Insecure Writer's Support Group Day. If you are a writer in need of support and encouragement, or a writer who has wisdom to share, please join us HERE

Many thanks to our host Alex Cavanaugh and this month's awesome co-hosts : Tonja Drecker, Beverly Stowe McClure, Nicki Elson, Fundy Blue, and Tyrean Martinson!

Wow. Here we are at the last post of the year already! This year flew by. 

Here is this month's optional question:

Q: Let's play a game. Imagine. Role-play. How would you describe your future writer self, your life and what it looks and feels like if you were living the dream? Or if you are already there, what does it look and feel like? Tell the rest of us. What would you change or improve?

A: This is a timely question, because I'm two years away from retirement and I think about it all the time. I have hopes and dreams--and a lot of doubt and fears. I know what I want it to be like, but the universe has ways of throwing a plot twist at you when you're least expecting it.  

First, travel: six months in Shrewsbury, England. It's where my fictional town of Sabrina Shores is based in my Indigo Eady series. I've also decided to set my new Brother Bart series there. It's rich with history and a perfect setting for a ghost monk to reside. 

Next we'll be motor-homing it around the States for a year or two. I'm envisioning writing at the beach, or next to a mountain lake. Water is very soothing. 

And finally, putting down roots. Hopefully in a place that we fell in love with on our travels. Ideally, it will be near water. It must have beautiful fall weather, and a little plot of dirt for gardening. And of course a garden to write in!

Above all, whatever I'm doing, it involves writing. Every day. I want readers to love my books and stories. And of course financial success would mean that I could maintain this simple but lovely lifestyle. Write. Travel. Garden. Repeat.  

What does your writing dream look like? 

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

IWSG: Google Gaffes

Thank goodness for the IWSG, otherwise I'd be out of the blogging gig altogether. It allows me to stay in touch with other writers, which soothes my soul. The sense of community is amazing and I'm so thankful for it. Heh, this wasn't meant to be a Thanksgiving post, but there you are. 

Anyhoo, if you're a writer and/or author and would like to join this supportive group of like-minded folks, please go HERE

Thanks a million to our founding host Alex Cavanaugh and this month's awesome co-hosts: Sadira Stone, Patricia Josephine, Lisa Buie-Collard, Erika Beebe, and C. Lee McKenzie! Please stop by their blogs and say hey. 

This month's optional question is: What's the strangest thing you've ever googled in researching a story?

Kind of a funny story. I don't know how many people know this, but I'm an American who writes in "English". In other words, my main character is American/English and lives in England. We speak the same language, but some things just don't translate. I have a British editor, so it helps when she catches stuff and calls me out on it. 

I recently published my short story, Lady Sings the Boos, a cozy paranormal mystery. I love my ghosties and they keep me so entertained by the things they say! Like when one of the ghosts speaks Pig Latin to Indigo at the Blue Note jazz club:

“Eddie don’t talk to the living. e’ says you lot can’t be trusted.” He shoved his bulbous nose close to my face, and ghost spittle sprayed my cheeks. “Now amscray before Eddie gets angry,” he said, blowing smoke in my face.

Stunned for a moment, I stood in a backward-leaning position, like an ancient headstone right before it topples over. I stepped back and waved away the smoke. Ghost-dude could use lessons from Miss Manners. And had he seriously just spoken Pig Latin to me? So last century.

Oopsie! Who knew that the Brits don't do Pig Latin? It seems that they might've heard of it (through American film), but it's not really a thing there. I googled it after the fact, but I hadn't thought about googling it beforehand. Even so, I didn't find much info about origin and whether the British ever used it. 

So I had to remove a couple of scenes, like the one above, that really tickled my funny bone. (FYI, for you Brits out there, amscray means scram in Pig Latin, a made up language.)

What about you? What's the strangest
 or funniest thing you've ever 
googled in the name of research?